add functionality to BCM RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi, maybe BCM 2010 can already do it but i cannot figure out how,

    i am trying to send a personalized eMail campaign / merge such that i can add a personal paragraph to some of the recipients

    i try to add a form field to the Lead page form, i figured out how but the field can only, as far as i can tell be of data type text field, i could not figure out how to add a "memo" field to the Lead contact form,

    also when i tried to set up the eMail merge via word, none of the USER Defined fields were available,

    lastly i want to possibly create a table,,( i have VS2010 Premium, so i can see the BCM database in Server Explore there and i can create a new table,

    i want the table to hold the personalized paragraph for each recipient but furthermore i want to send future eMails to the same recipients and THUS i want to keep track of each personalized paragraph, so there shoud be a 1 to many relationship between the user field and the new table

    not even sure which table in BCM contains the user / contact guid

    I think i need to create a new table and using a guid from the BCM user tables, and thus i need a relationship, I am unsure which guid to use and then i am unsure on how to get the field created in the new table to show up in the eMail merge, Insert Field area

    any clues would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance

    Monday, January 30, 2012 11:11 PM

All replies

  • Hi Frank,

    We are doing some researches on this case now, which might take some time before we can come back with some valuable suggestions. Please be patient.

    Thanks for your understanding and support.

    Good day,

    Calvin Gao[MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 9:23 AM
  • Hi Frank,

    I'm afraid I'm not going to be to provide much technical advice based on your questions, but more top-level advice regarding developing custom solutions with BCM.

    BCM is mostly intended to be an out-of-the-box CRM solution for small businesses. There is information on MSDN to illustrate how to use Outlook's object model to read/write BCM data. However, actually modifying the BCM databases at the SQL level is not something that is documented or really recommended.

    For sceanrios such as you describe, it sounds like Microsoft CRM would really be more appropriate since it supports more in-depth custmizations.

    All that said, you can certainly develop a solution to do what you wish with BCM, just without having that tight integration with BCM. For example, you could have an app that extracts whatever BCM data you need and then stores it in your own db. You can then automate Outlook to basically create your own mail merge-type e-mails instead of relying on any BCM or Outlook/Word built-in functionality.

    There's some related info in here regarding developer support for BCM:

    2300392 Support for programming with Business Contact Manager for Outlook;EN-US;2300392

    Bill Jacob - Microsoft Customer Service & Support - Developer Messaging

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012 6:57 PM
  • np Bill, thx for looking at the issue,

    maybe u could point me in the right direction, trying to figure out where the Master GUID (the unique identifier is located for Accounts, Business Contacts, Leads, ie which specfic GUID for sets of GUIDs are tying everything together,

    i havent dabbled very much in the VBA but i have a subscription to MSDN, the Visual Studio 2010 Premium and that give me access to the APIs for Office, including Outlook, and i do want to work closer with that and i also want to come up to speed on Azure (is that MS answer for cloud computing ???, ie will Azure give me most of what MS is doing in the area of cloud computing ???)

    maybe u could recommend a solid book on working with the Outlook API / BCM and give me a leg up on that task, ie a good place to come up to speed and to solve the issue as stated in the initial post,

    anyway, thx tho, sun is out here, hope it it nice where u r ?? c  u

    Frank Bruhn

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 12:45 PM
  • Hi Frank,

    Sorry, I'm not famliar at all with the BCM database architecture, and I think your BCM database question would be more appropriate for a BCM forum (or the Outlook forum is there isn't a separate one for BCM). I am not sure whether we even have this type of information documented, and I'm a bit doubtful that we intend customers to do this type of integration.

    Much of the developer documentation examples for Office is still in VBA code format since that is the programming language we include in the Office box. Outlook follows this practice, but it's a bit confusing because we don't support deploying *Outlook* VBA. Add-ins would typically be in VB.Net or C#. So the VBA code should simply be used an an example, or perhaps to prototype or tests some things in Outlook's VBA editor.

    Yes, Azure is our cloud computing development platform, so that would be the section of MSDN to check out in that area.

    Please keep in mind that BCM development is very much a niche product area. I've seen very few developers do any type of integration work. A link to the BCM developer documentation is in the KB article I provided in my previous post, and I'm not aware of any other documentation or books in this area.

    Bill Jacob - Microsoft Customer Service & Support - Developer Messaging

    Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:10 PM